Case Study

News Update #03 - Housing Solutions: The Interlace

22 March 2017

In the run up to WAN's Urban Challenge in London we will take a look at various innovative schemes that have been adopted across the globe to tackle housing issues.

This week we take a look at The Interlace in Singapore by OMA/Ole Scheeren.

The project is outside the commercial centre of Singapore in a green belt area that has a 24-storey height limit.

Architect Ole Scheeren explains, “The developer wanted 1,040 units on the 8 hectare (20 acre) site and the conventional way would have been a cluster of twelve towers – a miniature high-rise city with too little space between and no privacy for residents. The solution was to turn vertical into horizontal; stacked bars that would generate a diversity of urban spaces. We wanted togetherness, not isolation; a return to when Singapore was a village of little buildings, tightly knitted together.”

Ole Scheeren was looking at how to approach something with such a high density more on the scale of a vertical village rather than a single building or tower typology.

The project presents an alternative way of thinking about developments which might otherwise become generic tower clusters.

The development, made up of 31 apartment blocks, each six storeys tall, comprises an extensive and integrated network of private and communal spaces. The scheme reinterprets ideas behind contemporary living, with horizontally connected volumes establishing a better connected and less isolated residential environment.

Stacked in a hexagonal arrangement, the units are articulated around eight generously proportioned courtyards forming a unified topography where terraced gardens are positioned across the stepped volumes. Blocks are arranged on four main ‘superlevels’ with three ‘peaks’ of 24 storeys, while multi-storey openings allow light and air to weave into and through the landscape. Imagined as a ‘vertical village’, the 170,000 sq m project provides 1,040 residential units that are both spacious and reasonably priced.

Nick Myall

News Editor


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